From his origins on the family farm in Northeast Montana circa 1970s, Mike has always loved beef jerky; but had to settle for mediocre brands. He perfected his recipe in 1994 while in the U.S. Navy after a failed search for a great tasting, high protein beef jerky snack to re-fuel his body after exhaustive workouts. “Crazy Mike” was dubbed by his friends due to his passion for life and his crazy adventures. Skydiving from 14,000 feet, scuba diving past 100 feet, marathons, triathlons, 100-mile bicycle rides, and globe-trotting underwater on nuclear submarines to name a few!
In exciting news, Mike is currently working on some new flavors that will be available in 2020. This Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky brand name is located in Altamont, New York, and it is distributed under the name of Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky Company, LLC.
The next review for Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky will focus on a 2.3 ounce/70 gram bag of their Aloha Teriyaki flavored beef jerky. This handcrafted Aloha Teriyaki beef jerky flavor is described as adding some brown sugar and pineapple juice to give your taste buds a wonderful sweetness to that already flavorful mix. The jerky was cordially submitted for review by the Founder/Owner, Mike Merwin.
Ingredients: Top Round Beef, Water, Wheat Gluten, Sugar, Brown Sugar, Pineapple Juice, Salt, Soybean, Caramel Coloring, Ginger, Garlic, Less Than 0.1% Sodium Benzoate and Potassium Sorbate (Preservatives). Allergen Warnings: Soy, Wheat
The beef used is not guaranteed to be free of growth hormones or additional antibiotics. Also, the beef is not guaranteed to have at least partial free range access to graze on grass. As a result, the highest ingredient rating that can be awarded is a Good (8/10) rating.
The only liquid marinade used here is plain old water, and healthy pineapple juice. There are soybeans and wheat used, but soy sauce itself is not a listed ingredient.
Many people consider garlic and ginger to be in the superfood group. Garlic is part of the allium family, which interestingly heals people differently depending on an individual’s needs.
The sugar level is somewhat high at 6 grams of sugar per 28 grams of jerky to lose a rating. Our preference is 5 grams of sugar or less per 28 grams of jerky for a sweet based flavor as we have here. The salt level is high at 470mg of salt per 28 grams of jerky to lose another rating. Our preference is 350mg of salt or less per 28 grams of jerky.
This jerky does not qualify to have no sodium nitrite, where similar preservative potassium sorbate is used to lose a rating. Commendably, there is no MSG added.
Average (5/10) – Ingredient Rating
CRAZY MIKE’S BEEF JERKY – ALOHA TERIYAKI BEEF JERKY
Written by guest jerky taste reviewer Paul Rekker
When I open the bag, I smell a juice, possibly pineapple juice. The pieces are medium in size, and they are sliced quite thin. The jerky is a darker hue than usual, hopefully meaning more marinade in the jerky. The jerky is soft and easy to chew, and it leaves no oily residue on your fingers.
The first flavors I encounter are salt, pepper, sweet (but thankfully not too sweet), natural beef, pineapple juice, and soy I believe. I could have sworn the sugar was brown sugar, which was confirmed when I looked at the ingredient list.
I am really enjoying this flavor, it is better than most, if not all teriyaki flavors we have tried to this point. It is not really your prototypical teriyaki flavor, which I find to be a good thing. Teriyaki is commonly my least favorite jerky flavor, but not in this case. This flavor is addictive, and tastes like “more”. I can’t find a fault with it, so I am inclined to award it a 10/10. Gentlemen?
Here is Stéphane’s taste review: “The Aloha Teriyaki Jerky is good but doesn’t really BLOW ME away. The texture is fine and the flavor is not really reminiscent of Teriyaki or conveys a distinctive Asian flair. There is good beef flavor. However and I am puzzled, as I can taste another unidentifiable flavor. Mark suggested wheat and perhaps that what it is. I am comfortable with an 8 and possibly a 9 depending how happy the ending is…”
Here is what Mark had to say about this Aloha Teriyaki beef jerky flavor from Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky: “Thanks Stephane and Paul for your honest taste reviews. Yes Stephane, the flavor of wheat stood out to me, and highlighted this deeply marinated flavor. While this flavor is enjoyable and addictive, a teriyaki taste profile does not shine through. I too am at an 8 or 9 taste rating, where Paul swayed us.”
A 2.3 ounce/65 gram bag currently sells online for sale at $5.97. That works out to $2.60 an ounce, which rates as an average price.
Very Good (9/10) – Taste Rating
This resealable clear plastic bag has a label affixed to the front, and nothing on the back. Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky logo has a blue, red, and white depiction of Crazy Mike himself.
Some slogans printed on this bag are “It’s not good… It’s CRAZY GOOD” and “When it’s snack TIME… It’s TIME for Crazy Mike’s”. Some facts printed on this bag are “Proudly Made in the U.S.A.”, “USA Veteran Owned Business”, and “High Protein”.
The only minor bag category missing is the jerky weight is not stated in grams. A good blurb is printed Crazy Mike’s Beef Jerky.
Order their jerky online: www.crazymikesjerky.com
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